Baylor College of Medicine has received a $25 million gift from an anonymous donor to establish the Drs. Beth K. and Stuart C. Yudofsky Division of Neuropsychiatry in the Menninger Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at BCM.

Dr. Stuart Yudofsky, professor and chair of the Menninger Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at BCM and chair of the Department of Psychiatry of The Methodist Hospital, will serve as the Drs. Beth K. and Stuart C. Yudofsky Presidential Chair in Neuropsychiatry and the Director of the Division.

Compassionate care

"This remarkable gift honors Drs. Beth and Stuart Yudofsky’s compassionate care of the mentally ill, their vision for neuropsychiatry and their life’s mission to understand, treat and prevent disorders found at the intersection of psychiatry and neurology," said Dr. Paul Klotman, president and CEO of BCM.

Neuropsychiatry focuses on the care of patients at the interface of neurology and psychiatry, and includes psychiatric symptoms and syndromes associated with brain-based disorders such as traumatic brain injury, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, brain tumors, multiple sclerosis, seizure disorders and many others. Characteristic examples include depression in patients with Parkinson’s disease as well as irritability, impulsivity, and post traumatic stress disorder in patients with traumatic brain injury.

Recruiting world-class experts

"Neuropsychiatric disorders are inherently complex, and the optimal care of people with neuropsychiatric disorders requires highly-trained professionals who have specialized knowledge, experience and clinical skills that bridge multiple medical disciplines—including psychiatry and neurology. This pioneering division will feature clinicians and scientists with such expertise. The division will focus on enhancing the integrated care of patients with neuropsychiatric disorders throughout BCM systems and BCM-affiliated hospitals and institutions; on conducting basic and clinical research into discovering new, more effective approaches for prevention and treatment; and for training the next generation of clinicians and scientists in this realm, " said Dr. Stuart Yudofsky.

The new division will recruit at least four world-class experts in their fields who can address neuropsychiatric disorders from clinical and research perspectives. Among the recruitments who will have named professorships will be specialists with international renown in neuropsychiatric aspects of traumatic brain injury, in post traumatic stress disorder, in the basic sciences of neuropsychiatry, and in the development, testing and use of innovative technologies in the treatment of patients with severe and persistent neuropsychiatric disorders.

About the Yudofskys

Dr. Stuart Yudofsky has served as professor and chair of the department of psychiatry at BCM for over 20 years, and has also been chair of the Department of Psychiatry of the Methodist Hospital during that time. He previously was chair of the Department of Psychiatry of the University of Chicago and Chief of Psychiatry of the University of Chicago Hospitals.

Additionally, he has been chair of the American Psychiatric Association’s Task Force on Traumatic Brain Injury, is past-president of the American Neuropsychiatric Association, and is the founding editor and, for the past 23 years, editor-in-chief of The Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, the official journal of the American Neuropsychiatric Association.

He has edited or authored over 17 books and over 40 book chapters related to neuropsychiatry as well as many scientific articles. Since it was initially published in 1991, Yudofsky (with Robert Hales, M.D.) has been Editor of The American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, now in its 5th Edition, and widely regarded as the standard textbook in the field.

Dr. Beth Yudofsky is a psychiatrist who specializes in providing psychiatric care to hospitalized patients with medical and surgical disorders. For 14 years, she directed the Consultation and Liaison Service at Ben Taub General Hospital, where she cared for hospitalized patients with both medical and psychiatric disorders, and taught medical students and residents.

"Stuart and I are grateful for and honored by this visionary gift; and we are committed and confident that the new division will make significant advances in reducing the suffering and enhancing the functioning of the many people and their families who suffer with neuropsychiatric disorders."